Ngari Prefecture

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Ngari Prefecture

阿里地区 · མངའ་རིས་ས་ཁུལ།
Mount Kailash in Burang County
prefecture (orange) in Tibet Autonomous Region (light-orange)
prefecture (orange) in Tibet Autonomous Region (light-orange)
CountryPeople's Republic of China
Autonomous regionTibet
Prefecture seatGar County (Shiquanhe)
Area
 • Total304,683 km2 (117,639 sq mi)
Population
 • Total95,465
 • Density0.31/km2 (0.81/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+8 (China Standard)
ISO 3166 codeCN-XJ-25
WebsiteNgari(Ali) Prefecture Government

Ngari Prefecture (Tibetan: མངའ་རིས་ས་ཁུལ་, Wylie: mnga' ris sa khul; simplified Chinese: 阿里地区; traditional Chinese: 阿里地區; pinyin: Ālǐ Dìqū) is a prefecture of China's Tibet Autonomous Region. Its capital is Gar County. Its administrative centre and largest settlement is Shiquanhe. Parts of the border of Ngari with India are disputed (see Aksai Chin).

History[edit]

Ngari was once the heart of the ancient kingdom of Guge. Later Ngari, along with Ü and Tsang, composed Ü-Tsang, one of the traditional provinces of Tibet, the others being Amdo and Kham.

The lowlands of Ngari is known as Maryul. During the 10th century, the kingdom of Maryul was founded, taking the name Ladakh, lasted until 1842.

Geography and climate[edit]

The paved Xinjiang-Tibet Highway (新藏公路) passes through this area. There are well-known prehistoric petroglyphs near the far western town of Rutog.

The town of Ngari lies 4,500 metres (14,800 ft) above sea level in northwest Tibet some 1,600 kilometres (990 mi) west of the capital, Lhasa. Ngari Gunsa Airport began operations on July 1, 2010, becoming the fourth civil airport in Tibet (shortening the trip to Lhasa to one-and-a-half hours from three or four days by car) along with Lhasa Gonggar Airport in Lhasa, Qamdo Bamda Airport in Chamdo and Nyingchi Mainling Airport.[1]

Ngari is best known for Mount Kailash, also called Sumeru, and Lake Manasarovar. Mount Kailash is 6,714 m (22,028 ft) above sea level and is the main peak of the Transhimalaya (also called the Kailash Range or Gangdisê Mountains). The holy mountain and lake are associated with a number of religions: Buddhism, Hinduism, and Bon, among others, attracting numerous domestic and international religious pilgrims and tourists. Surrounding Mount Kailash are four ancient and famous monasteries: Zhabura, Chiu Gompa, Zheri and Zhozhub. Manasarovar lies 4,588 m (15,052 ft) above sea level, covers an area of 412 km2 (159 sq mi) and reaches a maximum depth of 70 m (230 ft).

Ngari has a cold desert climate (Köppen climate classification: BWk), with strong dry-winter subarctic climate tendencies (Köppen climate classification: Dwc).


Climate data for Shiquanhe (1981–2010 normals)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 6.4
(43.5)
9.5
(49.1)
13.4
(56.1)
15.7
(60.3)
20.5
(68.9)
25.2
(77.4)
32.1
(89.8)
26.4
(79.5)
23.7
(74.7)
16.7
(62.1)
12.7
(54.9)
7.1
(44.8)
32.1
(89.8)
Average high °C (°F) −4.1
(24.6)
−2.0
(28.4)
2.3
(36.1)
7.4
(45.3)
12.6
(54.7)
18.1
(64.6)
21.5
(70.7)
20.5
(68.9)
16.3
(61.3)
8.2
(46.8)
2.9
(37.2)
−1.6
(29.1)
8.5
(47.3)
Daily mean °C (°F) −12.0
(10.4)
−9.2
(15.4)
−4.8
(23.4)
0.1
(32.2)
5.1
(41.2)
10.7
(51.3)
14.4
(57.9)
13.8
(56.8)
9.3
(48.7)
0.5
(32.9)
−5.7
(21.7)
−10.1
(13.8)
1.0
(33.8)
Average low °C (°F) −19.7
(−3.5)
−16.9
(1.6)
−12.6
(9.3)
−7.9
(17.8)
−2.7
(27.1)
3.1
(37.6)
7.7
(45.9)
7.5
(45.5)
2.0
(35.6)
−8.0
(17.6)
−14.8
(5.4)
−18.2
(−0.8)
−6.7
(19.9)
Record low °C (°F) −36.6
(−33.9)
−30.2
(−22.4)
−25.3
(−13.5)
−17.9
(−0.2)
−11.2
(11.8)
−6.6
(20.1)
−0.6
(30.9)
−0.4
(31.3)
−10.0
(14.0)
−17.0
(1.4)
−23.5
(−10.3)
−32.9
(−27.2)
−36.6
(−33.9)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 1.6
(0.06)
1.2
(0.05)
1.4
(0.06)
1.3
(0.05)
2.9
(0.11)
3.7
(0.15)
21.4
(0.84)
23.8
(0.94)
5.7
(0.22)
2.0
(0.08)
0.3
(0.01)
1.1
(0.04)
66.4
(2.61)
Average relative humidity (%) 36 33 31 29 30 31 39 43 36 27 24 31 33
Source: China Meteorological Administration[2]


Subdivisions[edit]

Ali Prefecture is subdivided into seven county-level divisions: seven counties.

Map
Ali mcp.png
# Name Chinese (S) Hanyu Pinyin Tibetan Wylie Population (2010 Census) Area (km²) Density (/km²)
1 Gar County 噶尔县 Gá'ěr Xiàn སྒར་རྫོང་ sgar rdzong 16,901 13,179 1.28
2 Burang County 普兰县 Pǔlán Xiàn སྤུ་ཧྲེང་རྫོང་ spu hreng rdzong 9,657 24,602 0.39
3 Zanda County 札达县 Zhádá Xiàn རྩ་མདའ་རྫོང་ rtsa mda' rdzong 6,883 18,083 0.38
4 Rutog County 日土县 Rìtǔ Xiàn རུ་ཐོག་རྫོང་ ru thog rdzong 9,738 77,096 0.12
5 Gê'gyai County 革吉县 Géjí Xiàn དགེ་རྒྱས་རྫོང་ dge rgyas rdzong 15,483 46,117 0.33
6 Gêrzê County 改则县 Gǎizé Xiàn སྒེར་རྩེ་རྫོང་ sger rtse rdzong 22,177 135,025 0.16
7 Coqên County 措勤县 Cuòqín Xiàn མཚོ་ཆེན་རྫོང་ mtsho chen rdzong 14,626 22,980 0.63

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Tibet's fourth civil airport opens
  2. ^ 中国气象数据网 - WeatherBk Data (in Chinese). China Meteorological Administration. Retrieved 2020-04-16.

Further reading[edit]

  • Bellezza, John Vincent: Zhang Zhung. Foundations of Civilization in Tibet. A Historical and Ethnoarchaeological Study of the Monuments, Rock Art, Texts, and Oral Tradition of the Ancient Tibetan Upland. Denkschriften der phil.-hist. Klasse 368. Beitraege zur Kultur- und Geistesgeschichte Asiens 61, Verlag der Oesterreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Wien 2008.
  • Ngari Prefecture Annals Editing Office (《阿里地区志》编辑室). 2009. Ngari Prefecture Annals. (in Chinese) (English language Table of Contents: pp. 1585-1600)
  • Zeisler, Bettina. (2010). "East of the Moon and West of the Sun? Approaches to a Land with Many Names, North of Ancient India and South of Khotan." In: The Tibet Journal, Special issue. Autumn 2009 vol XXXIV n. 3-Summer 2010 vol XXXV n. 2. "The Earth Ox Papers", edited by Roberto Vitali, pp. 371–463.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 32°29′N 80°06′E / 32.49°N 80.10°E / 32.49; 80.10